Love And Pride For My DIY Bench – First Solo Project!

The love and pride I feel for my FIRST DIY bench are immense! I’ve been more than happy and content to create the designs for our DIY projects. Now, I understand the satisfaction you feel when you use your own hands to bring a design to life! What a labor of love this has been! As my most requested blog post, I hope I can provide the details you’ll need to tackle this DIY bench for yourself!

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My favorite part of this project was the fact that it was a zero dollar update! The pine boards I used were all leftovers from previous projects. You can build this bench to any size, but I chose to use the full length of my pine board to minimize waste.

DIY bench with brown stain and black slat pieces.
DIY bench with brown stain and black slat pieces.

Bench Build

Underneath the bench seat, I attached a piece of pine board that I later screwed my slat pieces into. Aesthetically, this additional piece also hid other smaller pine boards used to secure the bench legs.

I used a miter saw for all my cuts
Bench seat: 49″ length x 9.25″ width

I found it easier to start with the right bench leg. I used a small piece of pine board to secure the right leg to the bench seat, on the underside. This allowed me to create a more seamless look by hiding the screw holes. I then applied that same technique to the backside of the left bench leg.

Right bench leg of DIY bench
Right bench leg: 18″ height x 9.25″ width
Pine board connecting the right leg to the bench seat: 7.75″ length x 1.5″ width

Backside of the left bench leg: 18″ height x 9.25″ width
Pine board connecting the backside of the left bench leg to the bench seat: 9.25″ length x 1.5″ width

With the 5 slat pieces, it was super helpful to first secure them to the base of the left bench leg. Then I secured that constructed portion to the left side of the bench seat, completing the left leg. I actually eyeballed the spacing between the slats. At this point, the constructed bench looked quite disproportionate and I’d begun to doubt my design. Little did I realize how much better it was about to become!

Left leg base: 9.25″ length x 9.25′ width
Measurements for DIY bench
Click on image for a larger view

Stain and Paint

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, I’m OBSESSED with Sherwin Williams Iron Ore! When it comes to dark paint colors, this one is a winner in my book. It’s not black and it’s not gray, but rather a hybrid of the two with just the right amount of warmth! For the stain, I used my personal concoction of Natural and Early American. It’s definitely a trial and error sort of mix. I simply tested the stain on a piece of pine board until I was satisfied with the resulting color.

Stain – mix of Natural + Early American
Paint – Sherwin Williams Iron Ore

If you’d like to see how else I’ve used this paint and stain combo, then be sure to check out our stairs nook update and our West Elm inspired shelves! I glued the slat pieces on the top to maintain the seamless look.

Style

There are so many great details on this bench that I plan to keep the styling minimal. I want the attention to remain on the bench as much as possible. Although it fits perfectly against our slat wall, I do find the bench design to be too matching. Not sure where its permanent home will be but I’m envisioning either an oversized mirror or artwork above it.

Recommendations and Improvements

  • Feel free to use your choice of wood on this build. I used pine boards because I didn’t need to sand them prior to staining and painting. I only sanded the areas where I applied spackling paste. Also, pine boards stain really well!
  • I used the countersink drill bit because it allowed me to drive the screws further into the pine boards. I was then able to easily fill the holes with spackling paste, lightly sand and paint.
  • The 90-degree corner clamp allowed me to hold the bench leg and bench seat together so I could screw them in place. The quick grip clamps are great for solo DIY projects because they provide that extra set of hands you often need!

I’m still beaming with love and pride over my DIY bench! I’m so grateful for the overwhelming love and support I received on this bench! While this was my very first DIY project, it likely won’t be my last. I hope you decide to tackle this bench design and if you do, be sure to tag me on Instagram! The best compliment you can give us is to recreate one of our projects! If you have any questions, leave me a comment. Until next time friends!

Aminah Chung

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